This past week has been nothing short of exhausting. I’m grateful for my friends and some family and many fellow bloggers who have offered support. I am not alone. It makes me sad that so many families slug through these trauma-induced swamplands, but it is helpful to the spirit to know that I’m not alone.
So, here’s what I’ve come to know this week:
This “Sandwich Generation” mess is a bitch. So sandwich generations are the folks who are sons and daughters of living parents and who are parents themselves. In this midst of this mind-blowing crisis with Hope, Grammy has been absent. Honestly, I want my mommy, and she’s not out there. She did share that she had a passion for kids like Hope, but she didn’t say she had a passion for me. She did say that she didn’t agree with my decisions regarding Hope. She raised questions about my ability to raise Hope as a single parent. While I sit at the bedside of a kid who is presently telling me she hates me 100 times a day, I also sit and wonder what I did to deserve this Grammy freeze out. I feel like I’m catching it from all sides. My life is filled with gray at the moment when I prefer the definitiveness of black and white, so I’m inclined to just tell Grammy to kick rocks and go play in traffic. Sigh, but that probably doesn’t meet the WWJD standard now does it?
I am resentful about the need to be the bigger person. I’m pissed about feeling like I need to act like an adult. I’m annoyed as all get out that Grammy has failed to be the person I’ve built her up to be. At church this morning I went to the altar to ask for special prayer for me and Hope. The sermon had been about relationships that provide refuge in times of trouble. #messagefromGod The parishioner who prayed with me this morning asked, among other things, that all members of the family strive to act appropriately, as Jesus would, during this crisis.
Well, dang. So convicted…
Fall down 7 times, and keep getting up.
So, I will continue to pray that the relationship with Grammy be restored and that we both act as one another’s refuge. In order to do this, I’ve got to let this pissed-off’dness go. #notreallyready
Yeah, I’m going to have to ask to be delivered from this anger and hurt and ushered into a space of forgiveness.
Something tells me I’m going to have to pray *that* prayer repeatedly. #lowSouthernBaptisthum #shadysideeye
Anger and hurt deliverance prayers for everyone!! In dissecting this mess with Grammy, it’s not lost on me that Hope and I share a lot of parallels. Like Hope, I’m struggling with all the new expectations, the new roles, the fear, the anger when expectations are not met; only I’m feeling this mess towards my own mother. So prayers are going up that my Hope also be delivered from the anger and hurt she feels after so many years of disappointment.
Friends are everything. Old ones and new ones…You learn who your friends are on this journey. Your closest circle knows the most or as much as you are willing to share; they peep through the window and then they extend their hand, a handkerchief, a hug. They are compassionate. Even when they don’t know what to say, the empathy that rolls off of them gives you something to hold on to. I was telling a new friend this week about my love of the book of Job; I find it to be a fascinating expose on man’s relationship with God. My friend, who was trying to convince me to just allow some folks to care for me this week, chastised me by saying, “Well you know, Job’s friends weren’t really schnitt, but they showed up. Let me show up for you.”
That was too deep, and my sassy “I got this” façade came crumbling down. And I’m better for it.
I’m also delighted that my Holy Homeboy has seen fit to begin a new season with an old friend who was my bestest bestie until a stupid falling out nearly a decade ago. A week before this crisis started, we ran into each other at the local Costco. I’ve missed her so much that we later both admitting to crying after the interaction as we continued to shop in Costco. Her reintroduction into my life has been a special blessing.
Adoption drama needs its own version of Google Translate. It’s incredibly hard to spend time with someone who just says they hate you over and over again. Absurdly Gorgeous Therapist (AGT) called me to check in and reiterated that new adoptive parents must bear the brunt of all the anger of trauma and lost these kids feel. Yeah, dude, I know. But that ish is whack. Yeah, there, I said it. It totally sucks arse to sit and just be the whipping post. Oh, and let me not to forget to mention her boundary pushing efforts to be just generally rude and obnoxious. I think we should have a google translate app for every crappy moment.
Kid says: “I hate you! I wish I’d never come here! I wish you would just go away and die.”
Google Translation: “I’m not sure how to love or be happy, but you’re nice and kind and I have no frigging idea how to take that. Please don’t stop being kind to me and for God’s sake, don’t leave me!”
Yeah…adoptive parents need that app and we need it yesterday.
Encouraging Turnarounds Lurk about. Yesterday Hope said she would stop speaking to me forever. I calmly replied that that might be kind of hard living in the house together, especially since she needs me for stuff. Why not think about the things she might need to talk to me about…she started making a list and inside I smiled because it was one effing long list. She needs me. When she was done I said, sounds like we might have to talk a lot. Today, she talked and played with me; ever so often she would announce, “I’m still mad at you. I still hate you.” I just replied, “I know.” She let me hug her for the first time in 5 days. That’s got to be some kind of progress right?
Stress is the devil. So remember when I said detangling Hope’s hair last week was like pulling out a yeti? Yeah, well, I’m so stressed that my hair is now shedding like yocks of hair. I swear I harvested a guinea pig out of my head this weekend. Sigh…
I’ve cooked for the first part of the week and am really going to try to stay hydrated and rested. I actually got a zit this weekend!?!?! Zits at 41 are no bueno. I need to find a happy place stat. Today was all about hair and skin conditioning.
I have writers’ block. I estimate that I only have about 10 pages left to write on my dissertation. Needless to say, I’ve been distracted. I cannot continue to dwell on this dang chapter; I need that cognitive energy for other things. I pushed out a page today, but I need to pick up the pace.
The Furry One just likes to go pee in Hope’s room. Yeah, he just does. I’m going to go buy a Bissell Green Machine, and we’re going to have to learn to keep Hope’s door closed when she’s out and about. My old dog is just an old dog, doing old dog things, I guess. I still love him. #shrug
So, that’s this week’s lesson recap. This too shall pass; I know it will cycle back. I’ll be more prepared next time. I’m hopeful that this week, Hope and I can make progress, that we can get back to a little piece of our version of normal. I hope my face doesn’t break out and my hair stays put. I hope for more friend bonding, less dog messes to clean up and a completed dissertation.